Living big in a tiny house
Meet the wanaka couple committed to living their lives to the full within a very small footprint.
LOCATION Wanaka, New Zealand
SIZE 30m2 / 322ft2
COST TO BUILD NZ$220,000
There was no one eureka moment that inspired Will and Jen to move into a tiny house. Instead there were lots of little seeds which had been planted over a number of years. Partly, it was inspiration from watching small-space design shows on television and the internet, but it was also inspired by cycling trips, one of the couple’s main hobbies. Cycle touring is an exercise in ultra-minimalist living because you have to carry everything with you, and the heavier your gear, the more energy you expend as you travel.
Through their travel experiences, they developed the desire to live with fewer things, but to truly treasure the things they do have. When they sold their home with the intention of building again, they decided to construct a home inspired by the tiny-house movement.
Their home is beautifully styled, with the exterior covered in bitumen cladding, which runs from the roof all the way down the walls, adding a defined modern edge to the look. It’s easy to see how the house has been inspired by the downsizing movement, yet it’s slightly larger footprint does create an interesting hybrid between a tiny house and a more conventional small home.
Inside, the home follows an open-plan design, with a sizeable lounge and entertainment area, leading into a large kitchen with island and breakfast bar. The modern interior is warmed up through the use of timber lining. Up a set of stairs (all with inbuilt storage) is a mezzanine bedroom with a curtain that can be put up to block out the light and provide extra privacy when needed.
When building their previous home, Will and Jen spent three years living in a caravan and so had already given small-space living a trial run. "We have always worked well together as a couple. We just enjoy each other’s company and spending time together. We find living in a small space not difficult at all. We would prefer to be together doing things than in separate spaces, so it hasn’t been a challenge at all."
Extracted from Living Big in a Tiny House
By Bryce Langston, Potton & Burton